Overland Lada Niva Resto-Mod

Project Description

1995 Lada Niva resto-mod overland vehicle delivered from Serbia to the United States, via Germany.

Project Details

  • Client: U.S.-based 4×4 collector
  • Date: October 2021
  • Category: Lada Niva 4×4 Resto-Mod
  • Project Lead: Erik D. Griffith

Project Partners

  • Mechanic: Vladimir Nikolic
  • Mechanic Partner: COBRA-RIV, Gornji Milanovac, RS
  • Interior & Paint: ASALEX PAINTING, Gornji Milanovac, RS
  • Upholstery: TRADICIJA, Topola, RS

Resto-Mod Overland 1995 Lada Niva

The Client is a collector of Toyota 4×4 vehicles and organizes overland tours in the Sonora Desert. Business brought him to Serbia where he became fascinated by the Lada Niva 4×4. To build a resto-mod overland Niva, we sourced a rust-free, partially painted 1995 1.7L example.

The local Mint Car team then did a full full mechanical refresh including a new radiator, clutch and transmission service, new carburetor, new bushings and bearings, new brakes and rotors, new plugs, cables, hoses, and all new fluids. We replaced the skid plate, fitted powder coated brush bar with fog lights, and custom safari rack with LED lightbar.

The interior was stripped and fully reworked with new floors, headliner, new seatbelts, and retro-fitted rear seat belts. We fitted new dashboard, tunnel cover, interior plastic trim, cargo cover, sills and door cards.  The additional lights were wired to factory switches using existing blanks in the dash. The original seats were re-upholstered with custom houndstooth facing fabric and OEM vinyl backing to retain the original look.

The undercarriage was sandblasted and the truck was finished with a polyurethane coating in olive drab above and black underneath. Handles, head and tail lights, rear defroster glass and side mirrors were replaced with new.

In addition to the safari rack and brush guard, the vehicle was fitted with refinished black bumpers and black wheels, with Russian tubeless tires for the American market.

From washer nozzles to the horn to the steering wheel to window gaskets, every detail was addressed.

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